Can a truck driver be pulled over? Yes, at some point in your trucking career, you could see blue and red flashing lights behind you indicating you to pull over. Being pulled over in your truck is extremely nerve-racking, but the following tips will help ease the process.
What to Do When You See the Flashing Lights
If you are being pulled over, don’t just whip the big rig anywhere on the side of the road. You need to look for a place to pull over that ensures safety for both your truck and the officer. Try not to stop the flow of traffic. The best areas to pull over are typically off-ramps or paved areas. Additionally, avoid stopping on soft-shoulders because your truck may get stuck. However, remember your main responsibility is to look out for your safety and the safety of other drivers even when being pulled over.
Necessary Documentation to Have On Hand
After being pulled over, the following documents may be requested by the officer: CDL, registration, logbook, and bill of lading. A bill of lading is a receipt detailing what is being shipped, how much, where it is going, and when it should be there. It is typically signed by the shipper, receiver and carrier representative. However, only present the documents that the officer requests. Additionally, your documentation should be located in an easy to reach place in your truck. You don’t want to have to get up to get your documents because this could cause the officer to question their safety because they may be unsure of what exactly you may bring back.
Important Things to Remember While Being Pulled Over
First, do not remove your seatbelt before the officer sees you wearing it. This helps to avoid possible additional violations the officer may ticket you for. Second, when the officer asks why you think you were pulled over, don’t say anything that could be taken as an admission of guilt. Give brief, but honest answers. Also, it is vital for you to be polite to the officer regardless of whether you believe you should have been pulled over or not. Lastly, always remember to thank the officer for doing their job whether they gave you a ticket or a verbal warning.
Although being pulled over may be overwhelming, it is important to park your truck in a safe location. Be prepared with the correct documentation. And always be polite to the officer!
If you have received a ticket, check out this blog for what to do next!
Interested in becoming a truck driver? Advanced Career Institute offers hands-on truck driver training in California. ACI campuses are located in Merced, Visalia and Fresno. For more information on earning your California CDL, head over to our Class A CDL Training!